• Vol. 08
  • Chapter 01


I used to wonder what it felt like to fly, high above the clouds, in one of those dingy balloons that would cross over my village every so often. I would always stop in my tracks and wonder about how life was up there. Was it fun? Exciting? What would the wind feel like through my hair?

Every time my mother would catch me staring, she would smack the back of my head and scowl. Idiot, she’d hiss. You spend too much imagining and too little time working. Where are you going to get with your heads in the clouds all the time, huh?

I suppose it made sense -- there was much to do around the house, laundry, cooking, cleaning, taking care of the kids, feeding the goats -- the list went on and on. But I couldn’t help wonder: what would it feel like? To be free and away and gone, high up in the sky.

But now I am here. I have gotten the wind that whips through my hair, I have the birds-eye view of the world. I have the never-ending stretches of sky and cloud that turn golden-pink in front of the setting sun. I have the dingy balloon-boat that I have longed for my entire life. A blimp, we call it. The elders below deck call it a zeppelin. From the war.

I have all I wanted. Yet I am not happy. I look and wonder at the metal tubes that fly overhead. The flashing lights and vibrant colors. Suddenly the blimp seems dirty, old, aged. Like my village. The one I left behind, years ago. Now I want more. I want to be in that metal tube, flying effortlessly over the sky. I want that. The wind tangles my long hair. The never ending sun leaves my face and skin scorched pink. I want a sealed tube, wings that stay still. No sun, no wind.



I knew being on a blimp was my dream for my whole life. I should be as happy as the proverbial clam. I should be as happy as the cat that stretches in the sun. But I am not. I long for more. More.

She thinks grass is always greener on the other side, the elders murmur as I stuff my belongings into a duffel bag. She thinks the sky is always better higher up, the cooks whisper as I pop in to collect some frozen meals for my journey.

As I take my last glance at the people crowded on the deck saying goodbye, I think this is the right choice. Better sky, better situation. The sky is better higher up.